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Frequently Asked Questions

Answering your questions about having orthopedic surgery

A rendering of knee joint

Common questions and their answers

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a form of arthritis and a degenerative joint disease characterized by the breakdown and eventual loss of joint cartilage. Cartilage is a protein substance that serves as a cushion between the bones of a joint. With OA, the top layer of cartilage breaks down and wears away, allowing bones under the cartilage to rub together. OA is the most common form of arthritis and a leading cause of disability worldwide.
Discuss with your physician. These are common symptoms of OA.
  • Pain while standing or walking short distances, climbing up or down stairs, or getting in and out of chairs
  • Pain in the knee or hip that has hindered your lifestyle
  • Pain in the knee or hip that you have adapted to as part of getting older
  • Swelling in one or more areas of the knee
  • Knee pain associated with Osteoarthritis (OA)
Loose-fitting pajamas or knee-length gowns and robes. It is best if robes tie or button in the front and do not drag on the floor. Undergarments are permitted.

Good walking shoes with little or no heel. No house slippers.

Loose-fitting clothing, such as sweats, t-shirts, or shorts to wear to therapy, to do your exercises in while you are in the hospital, and also to wear when you go home.

Personal hygiene items such as razors, toothbrushes, etc.

Small amount of change is permitted. Please leave money and valuables at home or with your family.

If you have a walker or cane, please have your family/friends bring them up the evening of surgery or the next day. Please put your name on these items.

A list of all your medications and their dosages. Be sure to include any over-the-counter medicines, such as vitamins and herbs. You are allowed to bring your own inhalers, eye drops and birth control medicines. All other medicines will be given by the hospital.

Your insurance and/or Medicare cards.

Copy of your Living Will and/or Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare.

If you choose to bring any personal belongings, such as a pillow, be sure that it is a colored one with your name on it so it does not get mistaken for one of the hospital articles.

Please bring your Incentive Spirometer with you to the hospital. The Incentive Spirometer is a device that is designed to encourage deep breaths and help prevent respiratory problems. Keep the device clean and do not allow children or other family members to use it.
Go to the Mulberry Street Entrance on the west side of the hospital and enter through ER. Walk past the registration office to the marked elevator on the right. Take the elevator to the 2nd floor. When you exit the elevator you will be in the Surgery Waiting Room. Check in with the receptionist. You should report to the hospital at the time your surgeon told you.
St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital is committed to providing quality patient care, promoting patient education, and enhancing patient safety. You will be asked to participate with the following processes.

If you are scheduled for elective surgery, you will be asked to verify the correct operative site during your visit with the pre-admission nurse. If your operation involves right versus left (for example - right knee or left knee), you will be asked to verify the correct site.

Before surgery, a nurse will verify the correct operative site with you. He/she will also confirm this information with your medical record and the surgery schedule.

The nurse will ask you to mark the operative site with your initials by using a skin marker.

The Surgical Team will recheck the surgical site with you. They will look at your initials and will document the verification process in your medical record.

If you do not understand this information, please ask a member of the Surgical Team.

Please be aware that questions regarding your name, physician, type and location of surgery, medical history, allergies, etc., will be repeated multiple times during your surgical process in order to ensure your safety.